Transportation and Telecommunications
Highways: In 1994, about 189,000 kilometers
of roads, of which 108,000 kilometers gravel or paved. Road transport
declining element of economic infrastructure; maintenance and
truck fleet inadequate to expand service.
Railroads: Three railroad companies provide
about 90 percent of national freight haulage, but infrastructure
and equipment supply unreliable. In 1993, system had 14,148 kilometers
of track, of which 3,050 kilometers electrified, concentrated
in north, mainly connecting with Russian system.
Civil Aviation: Kazakstan Airlines and six private
companies use twenty airports, one of which (Almaty) has international
con-nections. Regular flights to some major cities in CIS countries,
Western Europe, Asia, and Middle East.
Inland Waterways: Two rivers, Syrdariya and
Ertis, total 4,000 kilometers of navigable water; nineteen river
transport com-panies, under state control. In 1992, 1.6 million
passengers, 7 million tons of freight moved.
Ports: On Caspian Sea, Aqtau, Atyrau, and Fort
Shevchenko, with limited commercial value.
Pipelines: In 1992, some 3,480 kilometers for
natural gas, 2,850 kilometers for crude oil, and 1,500 kilometers
for refined products. Systems mainly connected with Russian lines
to north; new lines in planning stage, 1996, with Western aid,
to connect with Europe and other international destinations.
Telecommunications: Limited service, inadequate
to planned economic expansion. In 1994, seventeen of 100 urban
citizens had telephones, heavily concentrated in Almaty. Most
equip-ment outmoded, overburdened. All international connections
through Moscow. Radio and television broadcasting govern-ment
controlled; satellite television broadcasts from other countries;
sixty-one domestic radio stations, one domestic tele-vision network,
Data as of March 1996